Waitrose home-baking

Is it strange The Great Sport Relief Bake Off (BBC1, 8pm, 17 February) features hardly any sports stars mixing up sponge? Jermaine Jenas aside, we were presented with a pretty random collection of celebrity faces, including Spice Girl Geri Horner, who called her first creation ‘Happy Mess’.

Amateur psychologists familiar with Geri might raise an eyebrow at that, but the judges were wowed by her savoury tart. Chomping away, that wily old badger Paul Hollywood could find “nothing to complain about” for the first time ever on the series.

Mary Berry was up to mischief again, leaving out key details from recipes, such as how long to actually bake the thing for. A cruel trick from the typically spiteful Berry, though our contestants were in disarray long before then. Brilliant war correspondent John Simpson was left baffled by the beetroot cake, but Geri, who later won star baker for her efforts, came in for more lavish praise.

This being a ‘Relief’ show, things jumped from light to dark. We learned that every two minutes in Africa a child dies from malaria. It’s a horrific statistic that whisked us straight from a marquee filled with cheerful people in the garden of England to the brutal reality of poor health-related resources in developing countries, where a lack of inexpensive medicines and “overwhelmed” hospitals mean the “suffering is unbearable” and children die every day, when a £2.50 mosquito net would make all the difference.

Food for thought of a completely different kind.